Rep. Jared Golden, who lives in Lewiston, Maine, thought everyone should have access to assault-style weapons — until tragedy struck his own town. Now the conservative Democrat sees things differently.
“I have opposed efforts to ban deadly weapons of war like the assault rifle he [mass shooter] used to carry out this crime. The time has now come for me to take responsibility for this failure,” Golden said yesterday after Wednesday’s mass shooting that killed at least 18 people and injured 13 others.
“Which is why I now call on the United States congress to ban assault rifles, like the one used by this sick perpetrator of this mass killing in my home town of Lewiston, Maine.” (See video below, posted by ABC News.)
Golden blamed his previous pro-assault-weapons stance on “a false confidence that our community was above this.”
Not only was this belief ridiculously naive, but it was also destructively self-centered, as a Congressperson should think not only of their own constituents (or lobbyists who line their pockets), but of how their decisions will affect the country as a whole.
If every NRA Congresspuppet waits until a mass shooter obliterates their own neighborhood before finally standing with basic, sensible gun legislation to protect Americans (such as expanding background checks, which Golden voted against), there will be nobody left to protect.
Golden went on to ask the people of Lewiston for forgiveness, which, at least, is a start in the right direction.
Front page thumbnail image: Jared Golden; ABC News